Wednesday, May 12, 2010

teaching in the midst of distress

It's hard to write when your heart is heavy.

The ups and downs I have been through make it difficult for me to keep my head on straight and keep my gaze focused on Jesus, much less my husband, kids, job, or writing.

Last week was really hard, but late in the week, I felt like my head started to stay out of the water a bit longer at a time. I finally felt like I could breathe again.

I could finally take a deep breath and feel the sun on my face again. What a blessing!

God continually lifts me out of the pit, and he continually renews me, day by day. He lifts me out, refocuses my eyes and mind on Him. He sets my feet upon the rock of my salvation.

God also continues to teach me in the midst of my distress.

I have been struggling with a lot of self image issues lately. I know everyone struggles with them. Maybe I need to go revisit the book "So Long, Insecurity" by Beth Moore. I had a lot of help from that, and probably need the review.

However, it has gotten pretty severe lately.

Over and over God has pushed to the forefront several different verses, and also kept speaking to me on this.... from before I got hit with this latest round of depression, through it, and now bringing it back to mind..... again and again.

I have a feeling it is something I am not going to be able to escape.

How about this verse to try on for size?

"Listen, O daughter, consider and give ear:
Forget your people and your father's house.
The king is enthralled by your beauty;
Honor him, for he is your lord."
Psalm 45:10-11

That came to me at the end of April. For the past what, two weeks or so maybe, I have been struggling with them. These verses.... God gave me the image that He is the King who is enthralled with my beauty.
My beauty.

I mean, I can spiritualize that and say that He is just seeing me through the blood of Christ, redeemed and spiritually beautiful. But I don't think that is the point that God is trying to make to me.

Our Pastor's wife shared with us this weekend. One thing she shared, that really spoke right into where I am at, at the moment, was talking about where beauty comes from. It doesn't come from our outward adornment, and in 1 Timothy, Paul says that women should dress modestly with decency and propriety.

Vicki looked up old testament women who were described as beautiful, like Sarah, Rebecca, etc, and found the root word they were translated from.

She found the same root word used in other places. Places like creation when God created Adam and Eve, and then called them good. "Good" in this case, as He talked about His creation, was the same root word.

"tobe" meaning among many other things:

pleasing to look at
favored
blessed
prosperous
happy
cheerful
kind
gracious
proper
fitting
useful
(from Strongs H2896)

Those were all words that embody both "beautiful" and "good."

God sees me as all these things when He calls me beautiful and good.

"The king is enthralled by your beauty;
Honor him, for he is your lord."
Psalm 45:11

How can I deny what He says in His Word? He plainly states he is enthralled with me. I am His beloved. I can rest secure in that.

"Let the beloved of the LORD rest secure in him, for he shields him all day long, and the one the LORD loves rests between his shoulders." Deut. 33:12

I can rest secure in Him. He shields me. I rest between His shoulders. He carries me, covers me, protects me. And loves me. And is enthralled by me. By my beauty.

Now if only I can like and appreciate and love His beloved like He does, I might be on the right track.

3 comments:

Laura said...

Oh, Heather. You are beautiful! Your heart shines. I have missed visiting with you! It has been too long. I'm sorry to hear you continue to struggle this way. My prayers are with you, friend. How are things? Will you go to SheSpeaks this year? How is your writing going? Are you still working at your church?

Trying to catch up!

And sending love.

Clay Feet said...

I guess it is always risky for a male to attempt to weigh in on a topic like this. And it wouldn't be the first time that I got in trouble for doing something like that. But I find it a bit interesting how it is usually women who struggle far more with a sense of worth in regards to beauty (which is precisely why men are warned to never even get close to that subject) while men wrestle with low self-worth from inability to perform in various ways. But all of us either openly or secretly have similar struggles to feel that God really might care about us as much as He claims that He does.

Amy@LivinginHarmony said...

I am so sorry to hear that you are struggling right. I do understand how hard it is to see ourselves the way others especially Christ sees us and I don't have the answer for you because I too struggle. All I have to offer to you is my prayers. God can mend our hearts and take the blinders off our eyes. I will continuely lift your name up to Him.
In my prayers,
Amy P Boyd